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The Daily Tar Heel

UNC women's basketball drops third straight ACC game

Paris Kea
UNC Guard Paris Kea (22) dribbles down the court during a game against FSU in Carmichael Arena on Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019. UNC lost 63-64.

The North Carolina (9-8, 0-3 ACC) women’s basketball team fell to Syracuse (14-2, 3-0 ACC), 90-77, on Sunday in a loss that extended UNC’s losing streak to three games.

What happened?

Syracuse put on an efficient performance against North Carolina in almost every aspect of the game.

Syracuse shot above 40 percent from both the field and beyond the arc, while finishing almost perfect from the charity stripe. However, UNC couldn't keep up with the performance. 

The Tar Heels faced struggles in many areas that Syracuse had no difficulty excelling in. The Tar Heels had 15 turnovers, 12 assists and knocked down seven threes compared to only seven turnovers, 12 made threes and 21 assists by the Orange.

Who stood out?

Redshirt senior guard Paris Kea and junior guard Taylor Koenen were two bright spots for UNC.

Koenen recorded a double-double for the Tar Heels with 21 points and 11 rebounds, shooting 3-5 from deep — the best rate for any Tar Heel in the game. Koenen was a leader on the court throughout the entire afternoon, playing all 40 minutes.

Kea led the team in scoring with 22 points on 61.5 percent shooting as she took a page out of Koenen’s playbook and played 35 minutes.

Junior guard Tiana Mangakahia had a phenomenal game for Syracuse. With a triple-double consisting of 34 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists to go with just two turnovers, Mangakahia was an absolute standout.

When was it decided?

Midway through the second quarter, the Orange went on a 15-2 run that brought the score to 54-32 as North Carolina faced a 22-point deficit.

Syracuse lengthened out its lead in that quarter and the Tar Heels had trouble digging themselves out of that hole the rest of the way. From that point on, North Carolina never got within seven points of Syracuse.

Why does it matter?

After a brutal start to ACC play in which the Tar Heels lost a nail-biter to No. 22 Florida State and held their own against No. 2 Louisville, UNC had a chance to get its first conference win against a solid Syracuse squad.

North Carolina is now 1-6 against Syracuse since the Orange joined the ACC for the 2013-2014 season and they remain winless on the road against Syracuse.

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels return to Carmichael Arena at 7 p.m. on Jan. 17 to continue their ACC play against Wake Forest (9-7, 0-3 ACC). Both teams are looking to get their first conference win of the season.


@DTHSports |

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